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In This Issue

As you read this issue, think about these insightful words from Mary Pipher:

Commitment is about being there when it's not convenient or easy. It's about steadfastness in the face of change and crisis.

Barbara in front of Abby Commitment comes in all sizes and shapes and levels of intensity. When it comes to dreambuilding, many people make only feeble attempts. A woman I'll call Cheryl comes to mind. Although she professes a desire to live a creative, self-employed life, her attempts to make that happen are repeatedly thwarted. In fact, if you have the stamina to listen to her story, you'll hear about years of being a victim of the most pathetic circumstances which have conspired to keep her stuck.

Whenever I see Cheryl, I can't help but picture YES, BUT tattooed on her forehead, because that favorite expression will be countering any suggestions I might make in response to her questions about improving her life. From her perspective, she's a modern version of Sisyphus, the ancient Greek eternally condemned to rolling a boulder uphill only to have it roll back to the bottom again. Sadly, Cheryl seems committed to her belief that life is treacherous.

"Behind 99 out of 100 assertions that a thing cannot be done is nothing but the unwillingness to do it," said William Feather. When we're barely committed, we're rarely going to win. It might sound backwards to commit ourselves to winning before we even begin, but that's the way it works.

Entrepreneurs commit themselves to market products and services before they know how the market will respond. They decide first to sell and then create their own markets afterwards. The same is true for education: we commit ourselves to continuing education and seminars and college degrees before any learning takes place. We commit ourselves to being parents before we hold a child in our arms.

Sometimes we tell ourselves we're committed when we're not even close. My friend Chris once told me about spending time on the phone with a woman named Carol who was struggling with her business. As Chris-who was brilliant at seeing possibilities-pointed out several positive outcomes, Carol weakly replied, "I hope so." As she told me later, "I suddenly realized that when people say, 'I hope so,' they're actually saying, 'I don't believe it.'" Commitment's not about hoping; it's believing beyond any shadow of doubt that what you envision can and will happen even when you have no idea how that will take place.

At first glance it would seem that making a commitment is a verbal act. That could be part of it, but the world is full of unmet verbalized commitments. They mean very little if our behavior isn't in alignment. For example, studies reveal that millions of people who have taken a public vow to be faithful to their spouse chronically break that commitment. And who hasn't waited for a service repairman who failed to show up at the time they agreed to? Or a friend who is never on time?

Keeping our commitments is an act of integrity-even when we don't feel like it. That's something the barely committed don't understand, but parents quickly learn that they must take care of their children when they're being lovable and when they're not. Same goes for taking care of our dreams. Whether the commitment is a big one or a little one, integrity assumes that we'll do what we said we were going to do.

At the end of a talk in London, a young woman handed me a piece of paper with the best quote I've seen on the subject. It simply read, "Definition of commitment: doing the things you'd said you'd do, long after the mood in which you said them in has left you." That's a definition worth living up to.

When I look at the current seminar offerings from around the country, it appears that Internet Marketing is the only leading to entrepreneurial success. I couldn't agree less. New opportunities are all around, waiting to be discovered and championed by a committed entrepreneur.

A strong business, like a strong building, needs to start with a solid foundation. If you're ready to make your foundation rock solid, join me in Madison, WI for two days of seminars that will strengthen all of your efforts. On Thursday, June 18, we'll be kicking off with Making a Living Without a Job. Whether you're just getting started or are ready to add some new ideas, this popular seminar will give you the tools you need to take the next step. That afternoon we'll tackle marketing issues in Cheap Tricks: Marketing on a Shoestring. You'll get dozens of ideas here for marketing that doesn't feel like marketing at all.

Then on Friday, June 19, we'll spend the day exploring What Would an Entrepreneur Do? Most of us have had a lifetime of conditioning to think like an employee. Unfortunately, that's not much help when we want to build a business. In one short day, you'll discover the entrepreneurial mindset that is absolutely required if you're going to succeed in your joyfully jobless enterprise.

Time is running out to register for these lively events. If you're planning to join us, click on the link below and make your commitment now.

Joyfully Jobless in Madison

It's Ask Better Questions month at Buon Viaggio blog. The month begins with a piece called Holding On or Moving On? and looks at our resistance to change even when we know the time has come.

You'll also find some new things at Joyfully including Multiple Passions, Multiple Profits (Business Ideas), Keeping it Lively in Austin (Inspiration Station) and Making Your Business Visible (Articles).

If you're a Winning Ways subscriber and have been thinking it's high time your May/June issue arrived in your mailbox, you're absolutely correct. It's being mailed a week later than usual, but it's heading your way soon. The theme this time around is Keeping Your Balance. One of my favorite articles is called Oh, the People You'll Meet, a round-up of entrepreneurs worth getting to know.

Sandy Dempsey has been blogging at The Dreaming Cafe about her own Joyfully Jobless Journey, as well as sharing the stories of others on this path. Now she's started a community for folks who want to interact, ask questions, share resources and participate with their tribe. Click on the link below to check it out:

The Dreaming Cafe

Invest in one long weekend (Denver, July 23-25) and six months from then you could be earning extra income while you travel the world, meet new people, and enjoy the freedom and independence of a travel writer's life.  

Over Three Power-Packed Days, you'll...

*** Learn the secrets of writing travel articles you can sell from a group of the best editors and writers in the business

*** Discover little-known techniques travel writers use to land concert tickets, meals, vacations, and more... without paying a dime

*** Walk away with a short publishable article in hand and the contact information for editors we know who are happy to work with you, even if you've never sold a story before

*** See for yourself, how you can have the time, adventure, and freedom you're looking for as a freelance travel writer

Click on the link below for more details about this event, or contact the AWAI Travel Division office toll-free at (866) 415-1425 or email: Reserve your seat before June 19, 2009 and you'll save $300 with their Early Bird Discount.

Ultimate Travel Writer's Workshop

Buona fortuna,


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